Earned Sick and Safe Time (ESST) Law & Reporting Requirements

MDH logo

Partnership and Workforce Development Unit - Food Safety Update

View this as a webpage

View past Updates via RSS Feed

June, 27, 2024

Earned Sick and Safe Time (ESST) Law

Effective January 1, 2024, Minnesota’s earned sick and safe time law requires employers to provide paid leave to employees who work in the state, which includes food service businesses.

This law does not prevent a licensed food business from asking specific information from employees as required in the Minnesota Food Code. Food employees and conditional employees are still required to report to the person in charge their symptoms and diagnoses that related to diseases that can be passed on through food.  The ESST law allows for disclosure of information given by an employee when required by another law, such as the Minnesota Food Code.

Understand your employee illness, exclusions, and reporting responsibilities

Employee Illness

  • Employees must report to the person in charge if they have any of the following symptoms:
    • Diarrhea
    • Vomiting
    • Jaundice (yellowing of skin or whites of eyes)
    • Sore throat with fever
    • Open, infected wound
  • Employees must also report to the person in charge if they have been diagnosed with any of the following infections:
    • Norovirus
    • Salmonella
    • Shigella
    • Hepatitis A virus
    • Shiga toxin-producing coli
    • Infection with another enteric bacteria, viral or parasitic pathogen


  • All ill employees must be excluded from a food establishment while they have:
    • Diarrhea
    • Vomiting
  • Employees with diarrhea or vomiting cannot return to work for at least 24 hours after symptoms end.
  • Employees diagnosed with Norovirus, Salmonella, Shigella, Hepatitis A virus, Shiga toxin-producing E. coli, or an enteric pathogen must be excluded from working with exposed food, clean equipment, and clean utensils. MDH will provide instructions if additional exclusions apply.





Earned Sick and Safe Time (ESST) | Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry (mn.gov)


Illness Reporting for Food Establishments-MN Dept. of Health (state.mn.us)


Foodworker Illness Awareness - MN Dept. of Health (state.mn.us)


Foodborne Illness Print Materials - MN Dept. of Health (state.mn.us)


Food Business Safety - MN Dept. of Health (state.mn.us)